"Mother Stands for Comfort" as written by and Kate / Bush....
She knows that I've been doing something wrong
But she won't say anything
She thinks that I was with my friends yesterday
But she won't mind me lying

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will hide the murderer

It breaks the cage, and fear escapes and takes possession
Just like a crowd rioting inside
(Make me do this, make me do that, make me do this, make me do that)
Am I the cat that takes the bird
To her the hunted, not the hunter?

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will hide the murderer
Mother hides the madman
Mother will stay mum

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will stay mum
Stands for comfort

Lyrics submitted by weezerific:cutlery, edited by Mellow_Harsher

"Mother Stands For Comfort" as written by Kate Bush

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Mother Stands for Comfort song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentThis song is ment to be from the point of view of kates son. She is singing for her son who kills people etc but because she is a mother she will always keep him safe what ever he does
    borg130on September 11, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song helps me understand sortof why my mum has left me, but at the same time tells me that even though she isn with me she wants to be
    forget_me_noton June 30, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is actually sang from the prospective of a murderer who finds solace in his mother. he knows his mum will always love him.
    mateusz14on June 06, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIMHO... Mother Stands For Comfort is a weird song, a dangerous lullaby to sing you to sleep... The 'shattering' evokes Babooshka... Another song of lies and deceit... But in MSFC, the son expects - and will make - his mother play her part...

    Initially, the song had me asking What does 'son' stand for? What does 'mother' stand for? ... Society 'imprisons' us all in stereotypical expectations. From Trisha to Springer, mothers who don't stand for comfort are either demonised or psycho-pathologised as 'failed mothers'. The mother of this song seemed caged in 'the prison of motherhood' by her son's wrong, caught between a rock and a hard place, and desperate for moral expression.
    Then I thought of Hitchcock's Psycho!

    'She knows...' (mother's intuition? or is he paranoid schizophrenic?) ... 'something wrong...' (crime? OR overharsh super-ego/maternal identification? Negative Oedipus Complex?)
    'But she won't say anything... But she won't mind me lying... Because...' (Has he already killed her for comfort? Is she mummifying in the chair?)

    The 'madman' has gone over the edge... He has murdered the mother to keep her 'mum'*! ... He has made her play her ghastly comforting part...

    The schizophrenic repercussion unleashes mad fearful imaginings. It breaks the cage of mental stability, provoking him to do dreadful things... There is a terrible, twisted lucidity... The cat/bird expresses social breakdown, mental disorder and role-reversal; and the maternal-hunter/food-gatherer has become the hunted prey...

    Just like Babooshka's husband, we are lulled by the sound of MSFC only for it to shatter our expectations...

    *He kills his mother to keep her mum... In England, mum=mother & to 'stay mum' means to say nothing of the secret you know!
    Theresa_Gionoffrioon November 28, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is incredibly crafted poetry... and offers many readings and meanings...
    Another meaning might be that 'She' (the cat's mother, the child's mother) knows (intuitively or otherwise) that something wrong has taken place involving the child ('doing'/'do'), but She won't say anything (refuses to? turns away?). Is the wrong 'unspeakable'? Is the truth? (hence the child lying)...
    The mother is hiding the murderer/madman... The murderer ("It" = dehumanised reference) breaks the cage, gets into the house... The child is overwhelmed by fear, and made to do this and that...
    'Am I the cat... bird...' = Metaphorically, the child becomes wild/other, a domesticated animal taking dead things to 'her' (her=non-mother?)... The 'bird' symbolizes the child's dead heart/soul and disclosures... The child is hunted/hounded, and is not a capable seeker in life...
    "Mother Stands For Comfort"... just as those plaques remind us... but this 'mother' is not comforting the child... Rather, she is hiding the madman and murderer of the child's heart... She is 'staying mum' ...
    Theresa_Gionoffrioon November 30, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentTheresa, amazing interpretations - I think you're very spot on.
    stentorianon October 09, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always thought that this song was a reference to self injuring. The self destructing teenager and her mother that didn't want to know about it or accept that her daughter is in pain and making bad choices..the mom would rather just be ignorant and believe the excuses her kid makes instead of confronting the problems.
    mollyphillips69on January 20, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI think people are reading too much into this one, like most of Kate's work I believe this is based on literature or Alfred Hitchhock's psycho. The song is from the point of view of a murderer or someone who's done horrible, unspeakable things and knows that no matter what he does his mother will think of him as a child always and protect him, it's about someone who idolises his mother. It's also about how the mother will never see him for the monster he knows he is "to her the hunted, not the hunter" the song itself is sinister but it also sounds cocky, like he's pleased he can slip past her. She'll hide him and be his alibi always.
    emilydanaheron March 31, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always thought it was poignant how "Mother Stands for Comfort", and the following song "Cloudbusting", are thematically very similar. Both songs deal with the way people, particularly family, defend each other against the persecution of society. There is an element of blindness when it comes to protecting a person we love. Kate is conflicted in this song about the balance that is upset by a destructive force, and the instinct to hide what is destructive in ourselves and in the ones we love. How do we come to terms with the duality and moral ambiguity within ourselves, much less the world at large?
    Asterionon August 28, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSo interesting seeing other views. For 20+ years was certain this was about young girl's abortion the day before. Mom is thrilled with daughter's choice as it makes her life easier, and if she pretends she didn't know, no guilt. No messing up plans in motion. Never questions her being with "friends". Mother for comfort? Not in this song. One mother takes a life, as the other silently encourages it.

    JustJane1102on March 06, 2011   Link

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